24 September 2010

Ricky Gervais backs Stop the Baby Trade monkey campaign

Comedian and actor Ricky Gervais is joining the animal rights organization BUAV (British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection) in launching a campaign to stop the trade of baby monkeys for lab research.

Stop the Baby Trade campaign calls for an end to the use of wild primates, many of which are babies that are snatched out of their mother arms, in medical and other experimentation. The animals are transported to labs to be used in experiments and also used to breed more animals for experimentation. The animals born in these facilities are also snatched from their mothers at an early age disrupting both the weaning process and the monkeys natural proclivity to remain in family groups.

In a statement released by BUAV, Gervais said he was “shocked” to learn of the cruelty and brutality inflicted upon the monkeys, who we share about 93 percent of our DNA with, during their capture, confinement, transportation and eventual death in laboratories.

“Imprisoning monkeys and snatching their babies is a disgusting way to treat other primates,” said Gervais. “Monkeys are highly intelligent beings who feel pain and distress, just like us.”

The primates that are captured, and those who are born in captivity, are kept in over-crowded cages surrounded by bare concrete or wire. An undercover investigation by BUAV shows the deplorable conditions the animals are kept in as well as the cruelty of their keepers. Videos on BUAV’s website show a trapper tormenting and abusing a wild-caught monkey and workers at one farm grabbing and pulling monkeys by their tails.

Both the United States and the United Kingdom are key importers of these animals.

Robin Lawless | Robin's Facebook
Robin lives in NYC with her cat Maggie where she follows a vegetarian lifestyle, practices yoga, and volunteers at Catskill Animal Sanctuary.

Photo credit: PRNewsFoto/BUAV